Saturday, April 25, 2020

1043. Live the Question - Rainer Maria Rilke

I want to ask you, as clearly as I can,  to bear with patience
all that is unresolved in your heart,
and try to love the questions themselves,
as if they were rooms yet to enter
or books written in a foreign language.
Don't dig for answers that can't be given you yet:
you cannot live them now.
perhaps then, someday,
you will gradually,
without noticing,
live into the answer. 

Sunday, February 09, 2020

1042. At The Zoo - Linda Pastan

at the Children’s Zoo

The children holding the python
all along its ten-foot mottled body
are like the blind men with the elephant—
what can they know
of what they hold beneath their fingers,
these not quite babies
still in the Eden of preschool,
sloughing off their winter jackets now
in the steamy weather
of the reptile house

And this creature they dare
to carry, this undulating river
of muscle, supple and curving and
thick as the arm of its keeper,
what does it know of sin
or apples, wanting only to follow the flick
of its two-pronged tongue
(like those blind men following
their tapping canes) to any place

its hunger takes it.

Thursday, December 12, 2019

1041. One Of A Kind (abridged) - Walter Rinder

a wonderful addition to life
for there is no one else like you

you are important
believe it  . . . know it
allow your realization
to radiate among
your fellow man
 for there is no one else like you

reflect your feelings
your hopes . . . your dreams
you have much to contribute
take your time
don't hurry
tomorrow will wait for you
for there is no one else like you

grow with your difference
be proud. . . to be happy
like yourself
become a new experience
for other people
they can learn from you
for there is no one else like you

the world needs you
when you hold back
the world is that much less
for there is no one else like you

Friday, November 22, 2019

1040. David - Ishion Hutchinson

You marveled at the vein in the marble.
The moment’s slight pulse when you approached.
His blood murmured when you neared, so I
believed, and still do. When I returned to
it, you were gone in the other country
of my head that will never, like him, age.
Long was I able to stare at the vein.
The giant must’ve just laughed and mocked him.
Then he imagined the giant’s fall, and heard
a restless quiet as far as Sokho.
He thought of the river near the vineyard,
its broad dreaming-stone. He knew it no more.
The animals looked inconsolable.
They knew their boy was lost to become king.
I was supposed to photograph you both;
but the stone sank in me and I didn’t;
my eyes going between David’s and your eyes
as the army, scattered, pushed us apart,
the tumult blotted out what I shouted
to you, which he heard, turned, nodded gently

with a killer’s uncommon sympathy.

Sunday, November 03, 2019

1039. A Parenthesis - James Laughlin

(This poet defaces his couplets with parentheses)
[a word from the Greek coming from para (beside)

+ en (in) + tithenai (to put) whence to put in be-
side] this is a practice très mal vu (deplored)

by egoistical critics who point out that his
lines would be grammatically more correct with

commas or colons    the poet responds quite true
but would they still be mine    for him the paren-

theses ate small fortresses in which he can take
refuge from logic and conventional behavior    his

psychiatrist has a more sinister reading on the
(s) [are their shapes not bivulvar] but he holds

his peace since they content his bizarre patient.

Thursday, October 03, 2019

1038. The Opening of Eyes - David Whyte

After R. S. Thomas

That day I saw beneath dark clouds,
the passing light over the water
and I heard the voice of the world speak out,
I knew then, as I had before,
life is no passing memory of what has been
not the remaining pages in a great book
waiting to be read.

It is the opening of eyes long closed.
It is the vision of far off things
seen for the silence they hold.
It is the heart after years
of secret conversing,
speaking out loud in the clear air.

It is Moses in the desert
fallen to his knees before the lit bush.
It is the man throwing away his shoes
as if to enter heaven
and finding himself astonished,
opened at last, 

fallen in love with solid ground.

Saturday, September 28, 2019

1037. Missing the Boat - Naomi Shihab-Nye

It is not so much that the boat passed 
and you failed to notice it.
It is more like the boat stopping
directly outside your bedroom window, 
the captain blowing the signal-horn,
the band playing a rousing march.
The boat shouted, waving bright flags,
its silver hull blinding in the sunlight.
But you had this idea you were going by train.
You kept checking the time-table,
digging for tracks.
And the boat got tired of you,
so tired it pulled up the anchor
and raised the ramp.
The boat bobbed into the distance,
shrinking like a toy—
at which point you probably realized 

you had always loved the sea.